An up-to-date security system has been installed in Canary Wharf in an effort to strike a balance between protection and comfort.
The Canary Wharf Group has invested in the Genetec Security Center, which manages 1,750 cameras, more than 1,000 doors and 17 automatic number plate recognition cameras.
With 140,000 daily visitors to the financial district, Canary Wharf’s security technology manager Mike Walker said that they were managing a “mini city”.
He said: “Our job is to ensure it’s always business as usual. We want people to feel comfortable and secure without being invasive. It’s all about finding that balance.”
Canary Wharf had previously been running an analogue DVR-based video system, which was described as inflexible.
The centrepiece of new hardware is the Plan Manager – a built-in map interface.
From the map, security personnel can respond to alarms, pull up cameras in specific zones, lock and unlock doors and track subjects.
Canary Wharf’s estate control centre manager Bernadette Bashford-Payne said: “With the size of our estate, the map interface saves us so much time.
“Our team can quickly follow a subject. Within seconds, we can pull up camera sequences which help to tell the story, identifying where the subject came from and how events happened.”
Canary Wharf also works with the police and Government agencies to pool information including video footage.
Genetec’s vice president of marketing and product management Andrew Elvish said that the approach taken had put Canary Wharf Group at the cutting edge of security technology.
He said: “It was quite avant garde of [CWG] to go in this direction. One of the main challenges is keeping that sense of feeling that people aren’t encumbered by security.
“The world we have is not a friendly place all the time but we still want to go about our day-to-day lives while feeling safe.”
When asked if he thought Canary Wharf was safe, he said: “In terms of building the best security system then CWG has built a place that is not only safe but is vibrant and thriving – people want to be there.”
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